I started compiling this post determined to make a “reduce reuse recycle” joke about Melania’s outfit choices in China.

Turns out they’re completely different outfits.

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I can, however, feel fashion bloggers wincing at the matchiness between the deep fur cuffs and the stilettos. That is a hallmark of Melania’s style at this point. Not much jewelry, very simple silhouettes, and matchiness.

This is the most embellished dress I can recall her wearing. Interestingly, her outfits in Poland and France were also relatively more colorful and embellished. I wonder why she allows her clothes more visual interest overseas?

The unexpected embellishment adds to the feeling of costume, along with the silhouettes that are not typical Melaniawear. The stilettos help tie each look back to what she typically looks like.

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While I’m slowly getting on board with the matchiness idea — some people are just like that — the thing I don’t understand is why she wore two outfits that include the same visual elements on the same trip. She knows that she’s going to be photographed, so I truly don’t understand the decision to wear two outfits that are so similar. It’s harder to distinguish between one event and the other, and it’s an opening for criticism.

The other thing is that black and baby pink really aren’t her colors. She does really well with warmer colors, and browns. Strong colors, not icy ones.

Thinking back on what I’ve written, it strikes me that I don’t know any of the context behind these wardrobe choices. Perhaps they were created by Chinese designers specifically for her visit. Perhaps the fashion industry is being big enough bitches that she’s having a difficult time finding options. I don’t know.

Is it worth finding out?

On the other hand, the images have to stand on their own. That includes the “art direction” inside of the images, which includes wardrobe.